THE sun shone as this year’s Southend Carnival was launched.

Southend mayor Chris Walker opened the carnival funfair in Chalkwell Park and took advantage of a couple of rides.

James Harrison, from the carnival association, said: “It was brilliant. The weather was great and the mayor had a great time in our teacup ride.

“Our carnival court and our sponsors also got a chance to tour the fair and try the rides.”

Mr Walker said: “It was superb, really brilliant. There were plenty of people there and it was a good show.”

The fair is the start of fun carnival events, which include a dog show and fancy dress competition, before the main procession on August 16.